A NEWPORT man has been given a six-year jail term for county lines drug dealing.

Matthew Williams, aged 27, was sentenced at Cardiff Crown Court, Wednesday, August 11, for being concerned in the supply of class A drugs – heroin and cocaine.

He pleaded guilty at an earlier hearing.

The defendant was arrested as part of Operation Corban – an investigation into county lines drug dealing.

Officers carried out warrants at two addresses in Newport on 17 May of this year.

Williams was arrested later the same day in Wiltshire.

PC Rhys Jones, officer in the case, said: “Tackling county lines and associated criminality is a priority for Gwent Police. We are committed to protecting those at risk from exploitation in our communities and making Gwent a hostile environment for those seeking to do harm.

“Williams is now serving a lengthy custodial sentence for his role in the supply of heroin and cocaine. We hope this sentence sends a clear message that county lines dealers can expect to face a significant term of imprisonment for their part in the drugs trade.  

“The public have an important role to play in providing information that can assist us in dismantling county lines drugs lines and safeguarding vulnerable individuals. I would urge anyone with any information about drug dealing in the community to report it to us, so we can take action.”

Information can be reported to us via 101, direct message on Facebook or Twitter or 999 in an emergency.  Alternatively, Crimestoppers can be contacted anonymously on 0800 555 111.

County lines is a term used to describe gangs and organised criminal networks involved in exporting illegal drugs from one area to another. They use dedicated mobile phone lines or other form of ‘deal line’. The drugs gangs often exploit children and vulnerable adults to move the drugs and money. This includes using coercion, intimidation, violence and weapons.

If you have any concerns that someone you know is being exploited, then please call us on 101 or 999 in an emergency. 

Advice on child criminal exploitation can be found here.